Santa Fe County Republican
Party urges no vote on GRT
The Santa Fe County Republican Party urges voters to reject the county-wide hike in the gross receipts tax (GRT) that is the subject of the Sept. 19 special election. Early voting began Sept. 2 at convenience centers around the county. Unless voters turn out and vote “No,” this tax hike—one of two GRT rate hikes the Santa Fe County Commission approved at its June 27, 2017, meeting—will take effect Jan. 1, 2018.
Gross receipts tax, which many of us think of as a sales tax, adds to the cost of virtually every purchase we make, and it’s added multiple times to some purchases. GRT builds on itself like a snowball, burdening our local businesses and taking its toll on our families at every turn. It hits those living on fixed incomes particularly hard. And it hampers economic growth, the only sustainable path to prosperity for all of us.
The tax hike we vote on next month is the 10th hike in the county GRT in the last 15 years. That averages out to an increase every 18 months. As a result of all these increases, the county imposes GRT at a rate almost 2-1/2 times higher than it did in 2002.
And GRT rate hikes don’t happen in a vacuum. They are just one example of how government feeds its insatiable appetite for our money. We also pay income taxes, property taxes, and a host of government fees.
County residents in the city of Santa Fe worked hard to defeat the sugar tax last May, and voters county-wide need to work together just as hard to defeat the GRT rate hike.
In voting “No,” county residents should not be misled into believing the hike is needed to fund essential first responder and behavioral health needs. The county commission took care of those needs with the other GRT rate hike it approved at its June 27 meeting. That 1/8 percent rate hike will cost taxpayers $4.6 million per year.
Rather, it will create a slush fund of almost $2 million annually. That’s right! At a time when kids are heading back to school and families are struggling to provide for their own essential needs, our county commissioners want to reach even deeper into our pockets to fund their own wish lists. Wish lists that recently have included things like $100,000 for a new county logo (that no one liked), and more than $4.1 million to build an equestrian center in Stanley (for which taxpayers pay $100,000 annually to manage even though it sits idle most of the time.) And we must not forget the $7 million commissioners spent for a 470-acre ranch at the top of La Bajada without a plan for what to do with it once we, the taxpayers, owned it.
In today’s economy, it doesn’t take long for a family to spend $1,000 on essentials. With the latest round of tax hikes approved by the Santa Fe county commission, the combination of state, county and city GRT adds $82.50 to the cost in Edgewood, $85 to the cost in Santa Fe and a whopping $91.25 to the cost in the Santa Fe County portions of Española.
We need to say, “Enough” and vote “No” on Sept. 19.
Yvonne Chicoine, Chairman
Republican Party of Santa Fe County
By Rick Albright
Roasted chile nudges noses
to the zesty flavor
that causes tears to tumble
Cool air paints
the trees for all to see
as they cruise on mountain roads
Zozobra ushers redemption
into hearts and minds
while burning on the baseball field
Flocks gather on the river to flee south
honking and cawing as they meet
Multihued globes float in blue sky
while tourists snap shots to show back home
Animals gather by the ferris wheel
jamming our fair streets.
Soon all will be cold and white, for a little while
Fall in New Mexico,
No hay mejor!
Pet Blessing is Oct. 8
at Cedar Crest Church
Mountainside United Methodist Church in Cedar Crest will hold our 6th Annual Pet Blessing on Oct. 8 at 2:30 p.m. at our outdoor chapel at 4 Penny Lane.
We invite all in our community to bring their non-aggressive animals to the event. Unavailable or deceased animals can be represented by a photo.
Following a short service of music, scripture, and prayer, Pastor Doug Mills will bless the animals individually. Each participant will be given a certificate of participation including a photo.
According to Pastor Mills, the church expects many kinds of animals. “We’ve seen hamsters and fish and horses, as well as dogs and cats,” Mills said. “It’s a lot of fun but a little chaotic, too, so everyone is expected to keep their animal under control with leash, carrier, halter, or lead rope.”
Several local pet organizations will also be present, including Edgewood Animal Control who will bring some animals ready for adoption. The Edgewood Animal Control will be prepared to chip any animal on site for $15.
Pet owners are encouraged to remember pets-in-need and are asked to bring some kind of pet food for donation to the East Mountain Food Bank.
For more information contact Linda Mizell at firstname.lastname@example.org or 505-286-9984.